Date of Award


Document Type

Doctoral Research Paper

Degree Name


Organizational Unit

Graduate School of Professional Psychology

First Advisor

Henrietta Pazos

Second Advisor

Brian Gearity

Third Advisor

Garry Trey Cole


School violence, Liberation psychology


In the past decades, numerous programs have been developed in attempts to reduce the rates of violence facing students in American schools. The spotlight on these programs have increased since horrific mass shooting events have taken place throughout the country. Many of these programs have utilized varied methods in their attempt to reduce school-based violence, from the implementation of hardline policies meant to act as violence deterrents to the development of risk assessment teams aimed at identifying and intervening against potential threats; however, few of the existing programs have shown substantial efficacy rates. Additionally, several of the violence prevention programs have demonstrated substantial negative impacts for minority students. This paper suggests a violence prevention program aimed at addressing the unique and overlooked needs of urban, minority school students with an emphasis on community-based, culturally informed interventions. The suggested program separates itself in its focus on the community rather than just the school, operating from the belief that schools are mirrors of both the strengths and challenges of the whole community; therefore, violence prevention programming must be community rather than solely school-based. Liberation psychology and participatory action research form the foundation for the recommended program with the community identifying the problems contributing to violence and determining the appropriate interventions to meet the specified goals.

Copyright Statement / License for Reuse

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

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